Medieval ploughing, 14th century.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Diorama. The plough was extremely difficult to force through the soil and as many as eight oxen might be used in heavy conditions. The scene shows the system of strip farming where the land was laid out in large open fields and then distributed between villagers in the form of long strips. The ploughs and oxen were communally owned, and the strips were allocated in rotation as they were ploughed so that sowing could be done progresively. Based on illustrations in the 14th century Luttrell Psalter at the British Museum.